All other players (of both teams) must remain at least 4 m (4.5 yds) from the ball until it is in play; The ball is in play when it touches the ground. INFRINGEMENTS AND SANCTIONS The ball is dropped again if it: touches a player before it touches the ground; leaves the field of play after it touches the ground, without touching a player
When a ball is caused to go out of bounds due to a simultaneous touch, Rules 9-2-2 and 9-2-3 now stipulate a referee will restart play with a dropped ball to one player of the team that last possessed the ball before going out of play. Previously, simultaneous touch resulted in any number of players contesting a dropped ball to restart play.
A goal may not be scored from a dropped ball until it has been touched by two different players. If the ball enters either goal without having been touched by two players, the result is a goal-kick or corner-kick. A dropped ball is the only restart which allows the first player who touches the ball to touch it a second time without penalty.
If the ball becomes deflated within the goal area, then the ball is dropped subject to the provisions of Rule 9-2-2 and 9-2-3. Ball deflated during a penalty kick results in retaken kick. Rationale: The provisions for a drop ball have changed, refer to 9-2.
A drop ball is played when the referee stops play for a reason other than a rule infraction. An injury is a good example. The referee restarts play by dropping the ball between two players, one from each team. A dropped ball may not be played until it touches the ground. The first player playing the ball is allowed to play the ball again
In other words, a drop ball is when the referee gives the ball to one of the players on the field. All of the players on the field except the one who is taking the drop ball should remain at least 4 m (4.5 yds.) away from the ball. The moment the ball hits the ground after the referee drops it, the game is resumed. So, if you want to look at it in a simple way, if the ball hits the referee while the soccer game is on, then the referee gives back the ball to the team that touched the ball last.
The ball deflects off the referee in the penalty area and (a) goes into the goal, (b) goes to A2’s teammate who then scores a goal, (c) goes to defender B2, (d) goes directly back to A2 at the spot where he/she kicked the ball or (e) deflects to a spot where A2 now has a scoring opportunity.
A goal scored directly by a ball thrown by the opposing goalkeeper is not counted. The restart is a goal kick. LAW 12. A not otherwise deliberate contact between the ball and the hand/arm is nevertheless an offense if it results in a goal or a goal-scoring opportunity against the opposing team.